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I was thinking of trying to make an auto battler using Star Wars characters/ scenes. This game, of course, would be free/ have no intention of monetization in any way.

My guess is this is fine but I want to ask anyway to know if there is anything I should avoid/ know, etc.

Im doing this as a challenge/ personal project to show off to employers when I try to get a job. (Software Engineer)

Thanks

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No, you cannot legally do this.

Star Wars is now the intellectual property of Disney. Any reference to named characters, locations, concepts, or other aspects of the universe they've helped popularize, that are not your original creation, would be an unlicensed use of their property.

If Disney's legal team notices your game, it's possible, arguable likely, that it will be targeted for a DMCA takedown, a cease-and-desist notice, or a lawsuit against yourself for infringement on their intellectual property.

tl;dr: If something is not your original creation, and you were not licensed to use it by its creator/owner, then it is not yours to use in your game.

The best way to avoid legal trouble is to use only your own original creative works, or those you've paid collaborators to create/use for that purpose.

I would argue that this use of an existing franchise is also not a good portfolio piece, because can read to potential employers as "I lack original ideas of my own, the collaborative spirit to work with other creatives, or a regard for the legal rights of others" — a dangerous combination in a creative industry.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Yeah okay, fair enough. Thanks for your advice! \$\endgroup\$ – Derrick Wright Feb 24 '20 at 22:09
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    \$\begingroup\$ I don't understand why people downvote a legitimate question? Can I not just seek advice from other people? \$\endgroup\$ – Derrick Wright Feb 24 '20 at 22:10
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    \$\begingroup\$ Your question amounts to "can I use other creatives' work without their permission, for free?" — it's hardly surprising that folks in a creative industry would consider that question poorly-researched at best, and offensive to basic professionalism and fair conduct at worst. \$\endgroup\$ – DMGregory Feb 24 '20 at 22:12
  • \$\begingroup\$ With the caveat of having no intention of profiting off of it \$\endgroup\$ – Derrick Wright Feb 24 '20 at 22:13
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    \$\begingroup\$ @DerrickWright not intending to profit makes virtually no difference. It could be a point in your favor if you are in front of a judge and going for a fair use defense. It won't be enough. \$\endgroup\$ – Theraot Feb 24 '20 at 22:14

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